Has God "Talked" To YOU today?
God, as portrayed in this beautiful piece of art
The Holy Trinity in art
"Some" of the televangelists who say God "speaks" to them in an audible voice
I AM ONLY ASKING A QUESTION
This is a departure of sorts. Normally I would present a hub about "How to," or "Ways to Know," something or other, but not this time. I want to be, if possible, delicately-serious, which means, "careful," to not offend anyone or their faith or church affiliation in any way.
I am not a highly-educated theologian. But man, how I do dream of that being a reality. To know The Holy Scriptures backwards and forwards, speak intelligently, and at will, on any Biblical-related subject to a few or a crowd. That is a dream that I will not see fulfilled. Not in this life.
With that being said, please allow me, with your labored-patience, ask you a "real" question. "Has God talked to you lately?" And I am totally-sane, serious and mean what I say. Has "the" God who created all things just by speaking, took you aside and told you what He expects you to tell a friend, family member or your church?
I am not kidding. And believe me, I am not making light of people I have heard on a few religious-based networks that I get on my DirectTV package. I hear statements such as this, "Yeah, bro. Bob, God woke me up today at 2:30 and 'told' me to wear a black shirt with white pants," very often. And the people who say this are nationally-known for their vast televangelist works. And some are not. Some are regular "joe's" like me. Are you following me?
This is not a joke. So don't wait for a late punchline. The first time I heard the statement that "God said," to so and so on television, was in the 1980's by the noted world-wide preacher, Kenneth Copeland. He says to his vast television audience on his daily telecasts that he and God have conversations. Audible conversations about his work, life, and plans for the future. Copeland's friends in the ministry, Jerry Savelle, Kenneth Hagan, Bill Winston, Benny Hinn, Leroy Thompson, Joyce Myers, and Louisiana evangelist, Jesse Duplantis also claim that God "speaks" to them like you and I would speak to them. In an audible voice. And yes, even former PTL founder, Jim Bakker, who is back on the air and preaching from Branson, Missouri, says that God "talks" to him at all hours of the night and morning.
The one famous televangelist who owns his own network, SonLife Broadcasting, Jimmy Swaggart and his son, Donnie, do not ever claim that God "talks" to them. They just preach the Bible. That's it. That can also be said for Charles Capps, who was once in Kenneth Copeland's "circle of friends," Andrew Womack, Dr. Arnold Murray of Shepherd's Chapel in Gravette, Arkansas, the late Adrian Rogers and Dr. James Kennedy. Not boasting, but I wanted to give equal time to men and women who do God's will and not tell me about God "telling" them something that is wrong with me. For this, thanks, guys.
I am not discounting this at all. If you met me, you would soon see that I am nothing more than a struggling Christian who does believe that God's only son, Jesus, died on the cross of Calvary and rose on the third day to be seated next to the Father to make intercessions for you and I. And to make this even more interesting, the scripture, "with God, all things are possible," instantly comes into play. Again, do not get your ire up at me. I am just attempting to ask a tender question and get some form of answer.
On the subject of "God speaking to people," in an audible voice, the also-well-known, well-versed, Rev. Charles Stanley of the Atlanta (Georgia) First Baptist Church spoke some years ago about people who said that "God spoke," to them while they were alone or in a crowded room, said, (to him), if God used an audible voice, "our" fleshly bodies would disintegrate into ashes. But do not tell that to the people I listed above. They claim that "anyone" who "asks" - - -"How does God's voice sound?," or, "Why does God "only" speak to them?" are persecuting them and they instantly quote scriptures about God taking care of His enemies. So by that, me asking a sincere question, "I" am God's enemy? What? And am I to take it that you or I cannot ask a simple question like "Why does God only speak to you, these famous televangelists, and not us?" without being tagged a troublemaker? I hate to say it, but something is screwed-up with this entire situation.
But for sake of "offending" these "holy, enlightened" ministers, "I" will suffer the blame for even bothering to ask my questions about God "talking" to these people and not me. I must have missed something somewhere. And if you were living in my skin, and had searched the Holy Word of God in various interpretations, prayed, fasted, and sought God by His rules, and not found an answer to my question as to why and how does "God speak" in an audible voice to only a select few, you would also be rigid with frustration and ready to "throw in the towel" along with me.
One time years ago, I took it upon myself to call the offices of Jesse Duplantis, the televangelist who is seen regularly on TBN, (Trinity Broadcasting Network) the largest religious network in the world, and ask whomever would talk to me, if Mr. Duplantis would reveal to me, a regular flesh and blood mortal, "how God sounds?" And I heard a young employee answer me with, "that is Mr. Duplantis' business," and wouldn't say anymore.
"I am only asking a simple question, and for all you know, I could be a donor to his ministry," I pleaded. "Sir," the young girl said nervously. "Mr. Duplantis works around the clock, year around, day and night, for Jesus," she said. I answered with a "great," or "that's nice," but didn't start an argument.
"So, does God speak to Mr. Duplantis in an audible voice as he said last night on the broadcast I heard?" I replied. "Again, sir, let me say this to you. Mr. Duplantis "is" the ministry, and doesn't take any money for his work or tell how God speaks. Now goodbye," the young girl said like she had been schooled to say. I never called back. I am not about causing anyone any trouble.
To keep you in the loop, what Duplantis said in his television sermon was, "this morning when I got up, God said, Jesse," I said, "yes." "I don't feel well, Jesse," God said. "tell me some jokes. You make me laugh. You are special, Jesse," God continued. And he, Duplantis said this to an audience whose "amen's" could be heard for two city blocks as Duplantis stood at his podium grinning from ear-to-ear. Which is great. I like to grin from ear-to-ear. And would grin from ear-to-ear and beyond if God "spoke" to me like he does Duplantis or any of his friends.
Let me go full-blown, flat-out, holding nothing back and go on record in front of the entire HubPages members and staff of editors, monitors and engineers by saying, "if God does speak to these men and their wives, I say fantastic." "great," and "blessed" are these people who are nearing the border line by their confessions and body language that "they are God's chosen," and regular believers such as myself, are somehow "kept behind a holy fence," and not allowed to know anything of God and His voice. Do you think this is fair? You are not obligated to answer. But do think about what I am saying.
Along with my sincere questions about "God speaking," to mortal man, do you think that I am dumb enough to incur God's wrath and temper by just wondering how this all works? No. I am just seeking wisdom as spoke of in the New Testament in the Book of James, who by the way, was Jesus' half-brother. "if any man lack wisdom, let him ask unwavering of God, who will give to him and upbraideth not," so I am just "dotting my "I's" and crossing my "T's" on this one.
Am I desiring to start a "firestorm," or rather, "brimstone fire," by asking my simple questions? Are you serious? I am not about trouble. Nor am I about bringing a dark cloud of suspicion on anyone's faith, church or ministry. Including the ones I mention in this story. I have carefully thought this story out and do not believe that I have written anything that can be considered as persecution or inflammatory text in my story.
I need to say one thing about my friends of the Catholic faith. I have a lot of respect for the Catholic faith. Some time ago I was priviledged to hear a wonderful lesson taught by a devout Catholic priest on EWTN (Eternal Word Television Network) of Birmingham, Alabama, the Catholic-based Christian network, who was talking about "how," God spoke to His children in modern-day times. The priest said that God speaks to us through pain, where we can see His comfort. God speaks to us in disappointment, so we can see His support. Even God uses laughter to speak to us, so we can live a happy life without rigid boundaries. I have to lean toward agreeing with this deeply-read priest. For he made several interesting points.
If you would, please do what you can to soothe my curiosity and find out the answers to my three questions: A. How does God's audible voice sound? (I would ask Moses, who did hear God's voice during his 40-days and nights in Mount Sinai when he was getting the 10 commandments, but he isn't here), and B. Why does God allegedly "only" speak to these people and not the rest of us? and C. Is there something severely-wrong with "me," as to why God doesn't "speak" to me in an audible voice? I'd love to know.
That's all I want or need to know. And when I get my satisfactory answers, I will move on with my life.
Oh, and in case that our God, is reading my story . . .
"I am ready to listen."